Contact Us | Print Page | Sign In | Register
DVD Review: Multiple
Share |
Lucinda Broadbent and Alison Peebles

Multiple Sclerosis DVDProduct Details:
Fanlight Productions, 2006
29 minutes
Price: $229 VHS / $229 DVD
Order No. QA-461
ISBN (VHS) 1-57295-461-2
ISBN (DVD) 1-57295-863-4

Editorial Review by Dorothea (Dottie) Cassidy-Pfohl, RN, MSCN:
In the rare free moments of a clinic day, I watched Fanlights Productions new release Multiple. The time flew as I saw a familiar story unfold in a creative, dramatically touching way. The person with MS could be one of my patients - the lovely and talented actor and director or the young student, the athlete, the mother or father - anyone sharing the myriad adjustments to life with Multiple Sclerosis. Rarely is there a film with such wide appeal as an advocacy/ educational tool, stimulus for discussion and great story. As an MS nurse specialist I could validate the charade, the frustration, the loss, the worrisome progression.

I recall a physician who expressed her sense of release after telling her staff of her diagnosis – 'I felt better but they felt worse'. Alas, if only all received the acceptance and accommodation afforded the star of Multiple. From familiar bone crunching fatigue to farewell to high heels, this film is as believable as it is artistic in it's representation of the symptoms of this bedeviling neurological disease. It conveys effectively the touchy issues of disclosure, discrimination and accommodation to life changes while reflecting acceptance and resignation, humor and spirit. I joined what I call the bobblehead voters among patients - those nodding heads that someone got it exactly right. Whether showing this for a self help group, working with family members, sensitizing the public to the unique needs of people with MS or educating colleagues, this hopeful little DVD has earned its place in my toolbox. As a health care professional caring for and about those with MS, I will use it and balance the disturbing realities of the disease with reassurance that this is indeed a hopeful time for people with MS.

About Alison Peebles:
For six years, actor and director Alison Peebles has been keeping a secret: she has multiple sclerosis. MS is an unpredictable but progressive disease of the brain and nervous system which is affecting her speech, mobility, and eyesight. Having watched her father die of the disease, she has even hidden the diagnosis from her mother and sister. Now, in the midst of working on the Scottish detective series, Taggart (carried by PBS), Alison finds that she can no longer hide her symptoms, and she’s afraid that the revelation may destroy her career — will directors accept an actor with a limp, will the producer’s insurance company continue to cover her? She also finds herself coping with the gradual erosion of some of the things that have made up her identity: she'll have to kiss goodbye to her sexy, high-heeled shoes.

Enlivened by Alison’s mordant wit and by imaginative animation sequences based on her own sketches, this is a compelling portrait of a brave woman facing her uncertain future with humor and determination. I believe very strongly that I should be allowed to work and live in this world as a person with a disability, she says. I don’t want to be seen as someone with MS. I want to be seen as Alison Peebles, who acts, directs...and sometimes falls over.

The Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers

3 University Plaza Drive, Suite 116 Hackensack, NJ 07601

Tel: 201.487.1050 | Fax: 862.772.7275